7. Conclusion

The Internet and its use have important implications for education in archaeology and in higher education more generally. PATOIS is only one of the very many projects that have responded to that change, presenting four online tutorials based on using and re-using a diverse set of digital data. The PATOIS experience has shown that Internet-based learning materials are delivered into diverse and variable contexts, which are seldom under the control of the teacher. Variability in the contexts of learning is a consequence of the technology, so the challenge for Internet developers is to exploit this ambiguity. Practical steps can be taken that reduce the obstacles, while benefiting from the flexibility. These include following technical standards and the careful scripting of unambiguous text. Clearly articulated aims and objectives and clear directions towards them remain vital. Perhaps most importantly, the Internet cannot be expected to supplant other forms of teaching and learning; it is best seen as one tool among many rather than the solution to them all.

8. Acknowledgements

PATOIS has benefited from the help and expertise of many people including: the ADS staff, Jeremy Huggett, Clive Orton, Jez Reeve, Judith Winters, The Friends of Christ Church Spitalfields, Ewan Campbell, Louise Humphrey, the Natural History Museum, Cressida Chappell, Ann Gow, Seamus Ross, the English Heritage National Monuments Record and many many more. This article has been greatly improved after comments from Catherine Hardman.


Last updated: Mon Sep 23 2002

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